Swansea Metropolis’s shirt sponsor Letou is underneath investigation for selling on line casino video games utilizing cartoons it’s claimed might “encourage youngsters” to gamble.
The probe follows a grievance to the Promoting Requirements Authority from the Marketing campaign for Fairer Playing.
They wrote to the watchdog claiming motion was wanted to take away advertisements for video games “more likely to attraction to individuals aged 17 or youthful and customarily accessible to view”.
The organisation mentioned Letou utilized in its promotions on January three a personality referred to as “Santa Paws”.
They despatched the ASA a picture from the Asian enterprise’s web site, based mostly within the UK on the Isle of Man.
It confirmed a cartoon polar bear, smiling and dressed as Father Christmas.
The CfFG additionally despatched photos from Letou’s web site exhibiting a grinning wolf carrying a submit bag and carrying snow sneakers, and an owl in a Santa hat clutching a gift between its wings.
When WalesOnline searched the positioning, it additionally discovered cartoons plugging video games referred to as Puss’n Boots, Fortunate Wizard and Conga Occasion.
“The danger is that the youthful you’re the extra doubtless that you’ll turn into addicted, and that normalisation will encourage youngsters,” a Marketing campaign for Fairer Playing spokesman mentioned.
“In the event you begin to gamble underage, even when they’re free-to-play video games, they normalise playing.”
He mentioned soccer golf equipment, in the event that they have been sponsored by playing corporations, had “to watch out in the event that they promote them on their web sites”.
“In the event that they hyperlink to free to play video games that’s not good,” the spokesman mentioned.
Swansea have eliminated references to Letou from the Junior Jacks part of its web site.
There are hyperlinks to the sponsor elsewhere on the positioning and to the agency Wager 365.
Wager 365 will not be underneath investigation.
“There’s an argument that this can be a symptom of the playing trade having turn into so bloated that they’re now the best bidder for premier league sponsorship,” the CfFG spokesman mentioned.
“However there is a matter about whether or not we needs to be letting them sponsor soccer shirts, and giving publicity to youngsters, and in the event that they do they shouldn’t be promoted on the web site.
“I don’t suppose this may final, this period of playing promoting.
“We’ll look again and marvel what the hell we have been doing, much like the way in which we do with tobacco promoting.”
In October the Playing Fee, the ASA, the Distant Playing Affiliation and the Committee of Promoting Apply wrote to playing web site operators.
“We’re writing to advise you to amend or take away instantly any advertisements in your web site, or in third social gathering media, which are more likely to attraction notably to individuals aged 17 or youthful, and customarily accessible to view,” the letter mentioned.
It mentioned it was “unacceptable” that photos have been getting used which will attraction to underneath 18s.
“Playing operators are required by the UK Promoting Codes and the circumstances of their Playing Fee licence to promote responsibly, with specific regard to the safety of underneath 18s and others who’re weak to being harmed or exploited by playing promoting,” it mentioned.
The ASA confirmed it had obtained a grievance.
“We’ll be fastidiously assessing this and searching on the nature of the complaints, and the problems raised, after which we are going to take the subsequent plan of action,” a spokesman mentioned.
“We’re taking it very severely.”
Letou mentioned the video games on its web site might solely be performed after age verification.
Swansea City declined to remark.
Bournemouth’s shirt sponsor M88, Watford’s shirt sponsor 138.com and Newcastle United’s sponsor Enjoyable88 have additionally been complained about by CfFG.